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Thread: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons, internal communications

  1. #51
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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    Just because you are discussing probable cause doesn't mean that it's relevant to the topic at hand. Like I sad at the start, subpoenas are subject to "reasonableness" and warrants to "probable cause. That's the whole reason I brought up both clauses of the 4th Amendment.
    ...rearead the thread, dude. I think you missed a piece.
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    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    It is not a discrimination case. Reading Is Fundamental.
    Reading may be fundamental, but comprehension and understanding are paramount. Nice dodge of my question.

    The Houston Chronicle in their headline disagrees with your assessment that this isn't about discrimination:

    "City subpoenas sermons in equal rights case"

    City subpoenas sermons in equal rights case - Houston Chronicle

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Deuce View Post
    No, it's a conservative insisting that subpoenas require probable cause.
    Is there suspiscion of criminal activity, or is this a civil action?
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    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Cryptic View Post
    The Mayor of Houston has ordered pastors to turn over sermons and other documents pertaining to their positions on gender identity, the mayor, and homosexuality.

    City of Houston demands pastors turn over sermons | Fox News

    Sure, the order was made in response to litigation. At the same time, all but the most dimwitted realize that Americans enjoy very broadly defined freedoms of religion and speech- whether they are a church or Hustler magazine with their famous / infamous satires. In short, even if the material is ordered to be provided, what exactly can the Mayor or the litigants do with it? In addition, I think laws forbidding pastors from taking open political stances in return for tax exemption are a federal matter, not a local matter.

    Things are getting pretty maoist in Houston. I hope the pastors in question tell the mayor to uhmmm..... well *&%O(
    The mayor must be out of her mind, if that is true.

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by AliHajiSheik View Post
    Reading may be fundamental, but comprehension and understanding are paramount. Nice dodge of my question.

    The Houston Chronicle in their headline disagrees with your assessment that this isn't about discrimination:

    "City subpoenas sermons in equal rights case"

    City subpoenas sermons in equal rights case - Houston Chronicle
    The case itself isn't about a specific case of discrimination, but rather about a law that deals with discrimination. In more details, it is about a case where an anti-discrimination law/ordinance was passed, and a group of churches in the Houston area worked to get a petition to get a new vote on it, to try to get it overturned. The signatures on their petition are being questioned for validity. I believe the state rejected some of their signatures, to a point where they didn't have enough, and now the group is challenging that rejection of their petition.
    "A woman is like a teabag, you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water." - Eleanor Roosevelt

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Is there suspiscion of criminal activity, or is this a civil action?
    It's a civil case by a group regarding the rejection of their petition to change an anti-discrimination ordinance that just passed. The city rejected their petition, after invalidating some of their signatures, which led to the group suing to get their signatures reviewed so that they can get their petition through.
    "A woman is like a teabag, you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water." - Eleanor Roosevelt

    Keep your religion out of other people's marriages.

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    Sadly, I'm not surprised that someone would be unfamiliar with this.
    A subpeona is not a warrant. Subpoenas are not subject to the probable cause requirement. And since subpoenas are not executed immediately, like search warrants, they can be challenged in court prior to the turning over of documents.
    Don't be a grammar nazi - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book 1 #7

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius46 View Post
    A subpeona is not a warrant. Subpoenas are not subject to the probable cause requirement. And since subpoenas are not executed immediately, like search warrants, they can be challenged in court prior to the turning over of documents.
    Oh FFS

    I've already been over this multiple times. At this point I'm just going to assume that you've already read through a few more posts and have a better idea of what I'm saying.

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    Oh FFS

    I've already been over this multiple times. At this point I'm just going to assume that you've already read through a few more posts and have a better idea of what I'm saying.
    Yup. And I jumped the gun. Apologies.
    Don't be a grammar nazi - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book 1 #7

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    Re: Houston Mayor orders pastors to turn over sermons about gays, gender and... the m

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Not sure how freedom of speech or religion is relevant here since the subpoena only asks for publicly made comments of the churches. Kinda hard to claim suppression of speech to ask what they already said in public.
    They also want internal memorandums. If the comments were truly public, then they would already have the material. Churches, however, are not truly public venues. Rather, they are private venues and speech made there is private in nature (though generally accessible to a broad audience).

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Dunno why. Could be as simple as a rumor that one church was suggesting falsifying petition signatures. No one is saying, nor are they likely to. A subpoena is not an accusation of wrongdoing, it is not intimidation as suggested,
    Yes it is intimidating- espescially when it is based on vague rumors and being requested by a government body that opposes the group.

    Those groups are inherently private groups and routinely engage in constitutionaly protected activities. They also have an expectation of privacy. The subpoenas are extremely broad and are evidently not based on any specific allegation.

    In short, when ever the government goes on vague "fishing expeditions" against an opposition group (and double for a group that they just happen to be opposed to) - no matter whether it is social progressives moving on conservative churches or right wing pro military conservative shaking down peace groups, the goal is intimidation / hinderance of an opposition group.

    Now, lets change things up:

    Greg Abbot, Texas AG: Hey Planned Parenthood- you are being sued because you might have conspired to obstruct access to places of worship.
    Planned Patenthood: Really, have we done something like that before?
    Abbot: No, but you still might have done it this time. Here is a subpeona for all written material and speeches on: Abortion, the Catholic Church, pro life clinics, oh and of course, Greg Abbott and Governor Rick Perry.
    PP: We engage in alot of constitutionaly protected activities- those include opposing your policies. Furthermore, we have an expectation of privacy. Those topics are broad. Do you have any specific material to ask for that would support the allegation?
    Abbott: No, not really. But.... you still might have done something wrong. By the way, your humanist buddies at the "Atheist Alliance" are going to get subpeaned as well- there might have been a conspiracy between you and them.

    Wait, I can here the liberals screaming... .

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius46 View Post
    A subpeona is not a warrant. Subpoenas are not subject to the probable cause requirement. And since subpoenas are not executed immediately, like search warrants, they can be challenged in court prior to the turning over of documents.
    Thanks for the good information about a warrant vs a subpeona.

    It seems a good litmus test on the legitimacy of these very broad, vague and non specific subpeonas would be if the judge agrees to implement them or not.

    My guess is that the City of Houston is going to be out of luck.
    Last edited by Cryptic; 10-15-14 at 03:47 PM.

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